Post Office members vote on cash deal for monthly pay switchPostal, Post Office (PO) April 3 2018
Ballot papers have been landing on the doormats of CWU members working for POL, asking them to approve a deal giving them up to two week’s extra pay in compensation for moving from weekly to monthly pay.
The agreement, which was negotiated with the business by the union, provides a potential solution to a long-running dispute over the transition and followed an important test-case victory that the CWU took to an Employment Tribunal late last year.
That Tribunal had ruled that the company’s initial action in unilaterally imposing the change from weekly to monthly pay had been outwith contract law, that the two members on whose behalf the union took up the case were still entitled to be paid weekly and awarded them two-weeks’ pay as compensation.
CWU assistant secretary Andy Furey explained: “When the Post Office first announced its intention to move 1,230 employees onto the new salary schedule, we told the employer that if they wanted to make such a change then they needed to negotiate a collective agreement and to pay compensation to affected employees.
“But instead, they just went ahead and imposed the change,” he continued, adding that this unilateral action had left the union with no choice other than the legal route.
After the Tribunal verdict, the company agreed to enter into serious talks, assisted by arbitration service ACAS, and the agreement now being voted on by members extends the compensatory principle to all staff whose pay schedule is changed.
With the recommendation of the full Postal Executive, the union is urging members to back the current proposals and vote ‘Yes’ in the poll, which closes next Wednesday (April 11th).
Andy says that the agreement reached “proves that the union can make a real difference.
“We quite rightly made a decision to spend money by pursuing an Employment Tribunal which we won and this, in turn, enabled us to negotiate this collective agreement via ACAS.”
Summary of the deal:
- For those members in post on 9th February 2018, a compensation payment of two weeks’ pay will be made with April salaries as follows:
- Impacted members will receive two weeks’ compensation via a minimum payment of £489 x 2 (£978) after deductions for tax and national insurance. It should be noted the statutory maximum weekly payment for compensation arising from our Tribunal claim is £489. This minimum payment will be made to all members in post on 9th February 2018 irrespective of being full-time or part-time.
- A week’s pay will be calculated on the basis of average pay over a 3 month reference period covering salaries paid between November 2017 and January 2018. Total earnings apply including overtime and allowances, London Weighting and Scheduled Attendance.
- If during the reference period (November – January) you regularly earned in excess of £489 per week you will receive 2 weeks’ payment based on average earnings. For example, if you earned an average of £600 per week over that period, the compensation will be £1200 after deductions for tax and national insurance.
- For members who took advantage of the interest free loan of up to 4 weeks’ pay offered by the Post Office at the time of the imposition, this debt will be netted off from the compensation payment. This approach will effectively reduce the value of the debt you owe and the length of time for repaying the loan. Those members who chose to repay the debt when they leave employment will owe significantly less money.
- For further details, see LTB 173/2018